I love movies, especially those little ole movies that nobody knows about like Bobby’s Girl, Waking Ned Devine, Bound, etc., etc., etc. Anyway, I find a lot of good little movies on cable. The choices are endless but rarely do I find a gem as good as “Toast” an English production about the childhood of the food writer, Nigel Slater. The script was wonderful and the acting was flawless. The direction absolutely on point, and I’ve sure seen a lot of poorly directed films. This little movie, Toast, has such heart, I was moved by so many of the scenes. Let’s just say the film left me in tears more than once. Without giving away too much; the story is about little Nigel and his early interest and talent in the culinary arts. Unfortunately, his mother was a terrible cook and had absolutely no culinary talent whatsoever. Hence when things did not work out well in the kitchen the inevitable suggestion would always be: “Well I suppose we could have toast.” Despite his mother’s lack of talent for the culinary arts he loved her deeply and their scenes together are very touching. His father was well meaning, but really does not have a clue about rearing children, which is very unfortunate as Nigel’s mother is not well. Quite tragically for Nigel, she dies an early death. Enter Mrs. Potter housekeeper and cook extraordinaire. Immediately, the competition between Nigel and Mrs. Potter begins. Little Nigel sees Mrs. Potter as a low class interloper from the wrong side of the tracks and she knows exactly how he feels about her. As time passes, they eventually move to the country and Mrs. Potter becomes Mrs. Slater, Nigel’s stepmother. Nigel is now in high school where he enters a home economics class. He is the star of this class, better than all of the girls. His stepmother feels that Nigel’s talent is an affront to her reign in the kitchen. Nigel tries to get his stepmother’s recipe for Lemon Meringue pie but she does not give it up. That won’t stop Nigel, he uses the school kitchen to perfect his version of the pie and the final outcome is not only beautiful but delicious. Much hostility ensues after that, as his stepmother accuses him of stealing her prized recipe. See this movie it will make your heart sing…..It will make you laugh. It will make you cry. Nigel Slater makes a cameo appearance at the end of the movie…..I give this one five spoons!!!
Marybeth, Hollister & Jane is Vera Jane’s sixth novel published with Musa Publishing. The Story of Sassy Sweetwater was Vera Jane’s second southern fiction novel and was a finalist in the ForeWord book of the Year Awards for 2012 and received a five star ForeWord Clarion review, as well as an Eric Hoffer honorable mention award for ebook fiction in 2013. Dancing Backward in Paradise also received a 5 Star Clarion ForeWord review and an Eric Hoffer notable new fiction award in 2006, as well as the Indie Excellence Award in 2006. Also by Vera Jane Cook: Lies a River Deep, Where the Wildflowers Grow and Annabel Horton, Lost Witch of Salem. Her next novel, Pleasant Day will be published in 2015 by Moonshine Cove Press and Pharaoh’s Star, published by Triplicity Publishing October 1, 2014